Coastal Foraging Guide

As an Island we have coastal areas on every side we turn, alhough it’s all coastal there is still many different areas and types of habitat, which gives rise to many different types of species for us to forage for. From the coastal marshes where we find marsh samphire and sea purslane to the rocky fronts where we can gather rock samphire and sea kale. It’s all there to be enjoyed.

These guides can be used to help you develop and are best used alongside some hands-on learning which we can help you with on one of our wild food and foraging courses.

The information provided below is made to act as a guide, when foraging for yourself you are ultimately in control of what you do and eat. Remember to only eat what you’re 100% certain of.

If there are any extra guides you’d like to see made or updated then please let us know by getting in touch here.

If you'd like to learn more why not join us on a Foraging Course

We Cover Plants, Trees, Mushrooms and Seaweeds and run throughout the UK

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  • All
  • Alexanders
  • autumn
  • Black Mustard
  • Brassica nigra
  • Brassicaceae
  • Carpobrotus edulis
  • Charlock Mustard
  • coastal
  • Crithmum maritimum
  • hotten tot fig
  • marsh samphire
  • rock samphire
  • sea arrowgrass
  • sea corriander
  • Sea Purslane
  • sea rosemary
  • sea spray
  • Sinapis arvensis
  • Smyrnium Olusatrum
  • spring
  • summer
  • winter

Alexanders (Smyrnium Olusatrum) Identification

Alexanders / spring / summer / autumn / winter / edible   How to Identify Alexanders Common Names: Alexanders, horse parsley, alisanders and smyrnium. Botanical Name: Smyrnium Olusatrum Meaning of Botanical Name: Smyrnuim indicates the plants distinct myrrh-like aromatics. While Olusatrum comes from Olus meaning garden herb and Atrum from…

Black Mustard (Brassica nigra) Identification

Black Mustard / Spring / Summer / Autumn / Edible Common and Latin Names: Black Mustard (Brassica nigra) Harvest Season: Late Spring to Summer these plants will be out in flower, leaf and seed, sometimes with a small revival in early Autumn. Habitat: They have been cultivated widely, and therefore…

Charlock Mustard (Sinapis arvensis) Identification

Charlock Mustard/ Spring / Summer / Autumn / Edible Common and Latin Names: Charlock Mustard (Sinapis arvensis) Harvest Season: Late Spring to Summer these plants will be out in flower, leaf and seed, sometimes with a small revival in early Autumn. Habitat: They have been cultivated widely, and therefore have…

Hotten-tot Fig (Carpobrotus edulis) Identification

Hotten-Tot Fig / Spring / Summer / Autumn / Winter / Edible Common Names Sour Fig/Ice Plant (The name Hottentot Fig is also known, but foragers should be aware that this name has colonial and racist history in South Africa where the plant originated) Latin Name Carpobrotus edulis, Aizoaceae (Fig-Marigold…

Identify Marsh Samphire

Marsh Samphire (Salicornia europaea) How to Identify Marsh Samphire Edible Common Names Samphire, Sea beans, salt fingers, glasswort Botanical NameSalicornia europaea Could be confused withOther glasswort plants. Potential to pick Sea Spray whilst picking marsh samphire, not to worry – it’s edible too Range and DistributionWestern Europe’s coasts including England…

Identify Sea Arrowgrass

Sea Arrowgrass (Triglochin maritima) How to Identify Sea Arrowgrass Edible Botanical NameTriglochin maritima Known HazardsThe more green parts of the leaves store hydrocyanic acid which is practically cyanide, which can interfere with oxygen intake within the body, this is typically present during and after a draught. These amounts are typically…

Identify Sea Purslane

Sea Purslane (Halimione portulacoides ) How to Identify Sea Purslane Edible Botanical NameHalimione portulacoides Could be confused withHabitat and look make this plant near impossible to confuse with anything. Range and DistributionTemperate regions of Europe including the UK, Asia and Northern Africa HabitatCoastal areas, specifically salt marshes and sandy areas…

Identify Sea Spray

Sea Spray (Suaeda maritima) How to Identify Sea Blite  Edible Scientific NameSuaeda Maritima  FamilyAmaranthaceae Also known asSeepweed, Seaspray, Sea Rosemary (we’re trying to rename it Sea Samphire as its uses are so similar to that of Marsh Samphire) HabitatIt grows on salt marshes around the world, native to some places…

Rock Samphire (Crithmum maritimum) Identification

Rock Samphire / Spring / Summer / Autumn / Edible How to Identify Rock Samphire Common Names Samphire, Stone Samphire, Rock Samphire, Sea Fennel Botanical Name Crithmum maritimum Could be confused with None, however, it is in the Umbelifer family so be sure to double-check identification Range and Distribution Coastal…

Scurvy Grass (Cochlearia officinalis) identification

Scurvy Grass / spring / summer / autumn / winter / edible Common Name: Common Scurvy Grass, Danish Scurvy Grass, English Scurvy Grass Latin Name Cochlearia officinalis Family Brassicaceae. Growing on rock near a salt water body Season There is a scurvy grass for most of the growing season, and…